CCL Principal Investigator, Marco Castaldi’s, response to advanced recycling critics published on

Published on with headline “Chemical engineer: Critics mischaracterize science behind advanced recycling”, Dr. Marco Castaldi’s recent letter to the editor responds to an op-ed article published therein which inaccurately described the processes employed in advanced recycling technologies as ‘burning’. The op-ed, authored by Judith Enck and Tok M. Oyewole, is headlined ‘Plastic burning “has no place in climate-forward NY”‘, inaccurately suggesting that the technology discussed therein, advanced recycling, involves the combustion of plastics. In addition to the absence of plastics combustion, the characterization of advanced recycling as a technology that should be banned from climate-conscious waste management strategies is also unsubstantiated by the most recent EPA analyses. Rather, there is consensus among sustainability experts performing detailed life cycle analyses that at present, advanced recycling should play a role in crafting of a balanced portfolio of solutions. That is, the sustainable waste hierarchy cannot be fully engaged without a technology for processing hard-to-recycle plastics such as flexible pouches, films, and tubes, and this is the primary focus of advanced recycling techniques.